Reflections on the International Students' Conference

Reflections on the International Students' Conference

15 May 2024 64 views

Interviews with participants by João and Tim

Extracts from various interviews that were given by participants during the conference

Joao: What did you enjoy about the conference so far?

Ai Matushita: First of all, I love this place. The buildings and the nature that surrounds it, I love it. And I have never been in a place with so many people from around the whole world. And being in the same space with this many people is a little bit stressful for me. But after a few days, I got used to it. And now I can have fun talking with people and enjoying the place. And what I like the most, is that a lot of people are here from many countries from around the world. So I can feel a lot of things that are happening around the world which I otherwise don't because Hokkaido, in Japan, is an island. In that sense, we are separated from the world. Well, not separated, but we don't feel what's happening. But I've noticed that in Europe, they talk about the war more than in Japan. So it is interesting for me to hear people talking about these topics. And finally, the culture is very different. I've enjoyed to learn more about this during the conference.

Ai Matushita, 17 years old, from the Hokkaido Waldorf School in Japan

João: Did you learn anything new during the conference?

Antonio: I'm taking part in the storytelling workshop with Flora and Leonora. I went in there not knowing anything. How do I tell a story? A story that's very interesting, very close to the heart. And being in that workshop, I was able to be vulnerable and open about how I did my old storytelling before. And through that workshop, I was able to know more about how people feel about their story or how the audience feels about the story, and more about how to deliver them and how to make a story. I was able to make it very interesting for some people because there was an exercise where we also had to tell some stories. And even though it was just three days, I was, well we were still able to enhance and improve our skills in terms of storytelling. And of course, since it's been three days, I was able to learn how to make more friends and how to socialize even better than before.

Antonio Miguel Chavez, 17 years old, from the Acacia Waldorf School in the Philippines

João: I would like to ask you the question of the day: "Is peace the absence of war? How can we invite peace and take care of it?"

Juliano Ambrosio: That is deep. I am not a philosophical person, but I'll share my thoughts... I don't think that peace is the absence of war. But I do think that war is the absence of peace. Because in a time without war, it doesn't necessarily need to be that there's no fighting happening. People can still be mad at each other. I don't know if you'd consider that war or not, but if there is war, that means there's absolutely no peace, and that's a guarantee. As for the second part of the question, could you repeat that?

João: How can we invite peace and take care of it?

Juliano Ambrosio: I mean, I know, there are a lot of bad people in this world, but it actually costs nothing just to be nice to people. And I think that is better than just being mean. I think that being nice will invite peace.

Juliano Ambrosio, 17 years, Acacia Waldorf School, Philippines

João: Do you think the conference can contribute to the process of finding the world within ourselves?

Francesco: Well, in my experience, these conferences bring another point of view which is for me, like a key that opens a door. And there, behind, there is a world that I can see and experience. So this conference is for me like an indication of a path, and it's in me, my freedom, to follow this path or to follow another. It's like an instrument that gives us directions, and then it's up to us what we choose.

Francesco Mai, 19 years old, from the Liceo Rudolf Steiner Milan in Italy

João: Did you get to know new people or are you always with your group?

Yan Iamamoto: I came here to meet new people. So I chose not to be always with my group. And I met a lot of wonderful people here and made a lot of new friends, from all around the world. They were all very nice and very open-minded people, who wanted to make friends with other people too. That was very nice.

Yan Iamamoto, 21 years, Graduate of Escola Waldorf Novalis, Brasil